Martyn Chase, chairman of Donaldsons, dives straight in when it comes to supporting his staff. Last year, he added £3,000 to the current £160,000 total the firm has raised for the Meningitis Trust by taking part in a swimathon. Unsurprisingly therefore, staff feel the firm of independent commercial property consultants puts something back into the local community, the 54% positive score ranking it just outside the top 50 on this.
They also say they can make a valuable contribution to the success of the organisation (75%) — and their efforts are noticed. Every month, Chase, who has worked for the company for 30 years, presents the "chairman's award" to a member of staff whose work has been outstanding. The winner receives £100 — and annual awards recognising the best team, newcomer and office are also given.
The Andy Tudor memorial award is presented to two promising new partners every year. It is named after a partner who lost his battle with cancer two years ago. The winner's potential is developed through a week's business school training. Through such measures people feel the company really tries to help its employees (73%).
As well as offering internal training courses, Donaldsons encourages all employees — not just surveyors — to study for professional qualifications. Staff say the job is good for their own growth (79%), and believe their training is of personal benefit to them (70%). Employees are certainly good sports. Riding, polo and rock climbing are a few of the activities they enjoy out of hours. They say team members go out of their way to help each other (76%) and are fun to work with (79%). People report feeling fully involved at work (76%) with good opportunities to learn and grow (69%) — but the company respects their personal lives. After two years' service, staff can take an unpaid sabbatical.
Donaldsons takes its role in the community seriously. Employees are provided an extra three days' leave per year to help others and can undertake charity work during office hours. Staff feel their efforts to help good causes outside work are well supported, earning the organisation a 68% positive score and a top 50 ranking.
The company is a member of the Business in the Community movement and supports the Action on Homelessness programme — as a result of the latter initiative, and after a two-week trial, someone on a work experience placement has just accepted a full-time position at Donaldsons. Staff are proud to work for the firm (78%).
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